Driver who was four times over the limit for drugs knocked down and killed cyclist

By Stephen Topping

A van driver who struck down and killed a Bolton cyclist while at more than four times the limit for drugs has been jailed.

Jonathon Ramsbottom, from Heywood, hit a bicycle being ridden by 54-year-old Stephen White on the morning of May 9 last year.

Mr White suffered serious injuries in the collision, which happened on Burnley Road in Todmorden, West Yorkshire.

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Despite the best efforts of medics, Mr White died in hospital a short time later.

Ramsbottom, of Hind Hill Street, was found to have 200 micrograms of Benzoylecgonine - a major metabolite of cocaine - in 100millilitres of blood.

Stephen White, who was killed in the collision (West Yorkshire Police)

This amount was in excess of four times the specified legal limit.

He was charged with causing death by driving without due care while unfit through drugs and appeared at Leeds Crown Court yesterday (October 11), where he pleaded guilty.

Ramsbottom, 37, was jailed for seven years.

In sentencing Ramsbottom, the judge said that he would have jailed him for 10 years had he opted for trial.

In a statement issued after the sentencing, Detective Constable Simon Marshall of West Yorkshire Police's Major Collision and Enquiry Team, said: “This sentence reflects the severity of the consequences of driving while under the influence of drugs, and should serve as a warning to anyone who believes they can do so safely.”

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